Big Sky Roundup

Gov. Gianforte declares statewide flooding disaster

By: - May 17, 2023 1:48 pm

Montana State Auditor and Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Troy Downing stands with a ranching family on the banks of the Clark’s Fork of the Yellowstone River during the spring flooding in 2022 (Photo courtesy of the Office of the Montana State Auditor).

Gov. Greg Gianforte issued an executive order Tuesday declaring a statewide disaster in response to flooding in northeast, western, and south-central Montana.

“Runoff from recent rainfall and snowmelt has compromised critical infrastructure and roads in Montana,” Gov. Gianforte said in a statement from his office. “This order will help impacted communities rebuild and get back on their feet.”

Beginning on April 10, 2023, a combination of rainfall and high temperatures causing snowmelt led to major flooding along the Milk River and its tributaries in northeast Montana.

Western and south-central Montana also saw from 1-4 inches of rainfall, as well as rapid snowmelt with warm weather in the first two weeks of April.

Meagher, Valley, Hill, Liberty, Blaine, Daniels, and Park Counties, the Fort Belknap Indian Community, the Fort Peck Indian Reservation, and the towns of Glasgow and Nashua enacted emergency or disaster declarations in response to the conditions, with several of them reporting extensive damage to infrastructure.

The governor’s executive order may be found here.

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